Initiative in Growing or R&D


Winner: Vitacress

Runner-up: Greenvale

Vitacress has invested £4.5 million in a new herb facility at its Chichester site to create the biggest single pot herb growing unit in the UK.

The state-of-the-art facility consists of five hectares of production space, with an additional refrigerated packing area to ensure all pots are packed in a cool-chain environment.

Harvested plants are now pre-cooled in a 1,600 sqm temperature-controlled chamber. The latest generation of pot-handling robotics ensures optimum seed planting and pot spacing with a tailor-made ebb and flood bench system also providing better controls over the internal environment.

All water applied as irrigation to plants is now computer-controlled and any waste water recirculated back into the growing system.